Today’s Art (17th November 2018)

Well, today’s (very heavily) digitally-edited painting is another memory painting. This one is another painting of Portsdown Hill at night that was based on my memories of seeing it during a car journey a while before I made this painting.

Although I probably didn’t get every precise detail right, and this painting required a lot more digital editing than I expected (including adding some digital lighting effects – here’s a version of the painting with fewer effects), it still looks at least somewhat like my memory does. Plus it also gave me a chance to experiment with some techniques for painting rain in a more “realistic” way.

As usual, this painting (and the version with fewer effects) is released under a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND licence.

“Portsdown Hill Again” By C. A. Brown

Today’s Art (16th November 2018)

Well, today’s digitally-edited painting is a memory painting based on a pair of vaguely gothic-looking trees that I saw on a walk near Westbrook on a gloomy afternoon a few hours beforehand. Although I probably got some of the details wrong (and did something a bit weird with the perspective too), I quite like how this painting turned out 🙂

As usual, this painting is released under a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND licence.

“Westbrook Gothic” By C. A. Brown

Today’s Art (18th October 2018)

Well, unfortunately, I was feeling a little bit uninspired. So, this is a stylised digitally-edited memory painting of part of the university campus in Aberystwyth. Although this painting turned out better than I’d expected (especially after I digitally altered the colour palette), I messed up the perspective on the staircase on the right-hand side of the picture though.

As usual, this painting is released under a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND licence.

“Aberystwyth – Campus Corridor” By C. A. Brown

Two Tips For Knowing What To Paint From Memory

Well, I thought that I’d talk about painting from memory again today. Although I won’t be talking about how to memorise things you see here (you can find tips for how to do that in the second half of this article), I’ll be talking about how to choose what to memorise.

Because, well, you’re probably only going to be able to memorise 1-2 scenes at a time. So, choosing the right one matters.

1) Know yourself: understand your own artistic sensibilities (eg: what your art style is focused on, what interests you visually etc..). This is important because it will help you to spot interesting things that you will enjoy turning into paintings.

For example, my own art style tends to focus a lot on light, colour and shadow. So, during a short car journey the night before I originally prepared this article, I happened to look at the passenger wing mirror and notice that the lights at the back of the car had bathed a nearby wall in red light.

But, whilst everything in the wing mirror was various shades of dark red, everything outside the window was illuminated by a white/blue light that was nearby. The contrast in both lighting and colours seemed like exactly my type of thing.

So, I made a stylised memory painting the next day, based on a quick sketch from memory I’d made shortly after the journey. Here’s a preview of it:

This is a reduced-size preview. The full-size painting will be posted here on the 16th August.

So, if you know what qualities you focus on a lot in your art, then this will help you work out what to memorise. Once you know what really interests you visually, you can focus your attention on looking for things that fit into this quality. This will result in more interesting memory paintings. Plus, it also helps with memorisation too because you’ll be memorising things that look dramatic or interesting to you.

2) Follow your intuition: If one particular scene seems more memorable than the others, then paint that one. Even if it doesn’t look as complex or interesting as the other things that you’ve seen, then paint it nonetheless. Why? Because it will not only be the clearest memory, but because it’s probably memorable for a reason.

For example, the car journey I mentioned earlier also included some really beautiful-looking views of streets at night, elaborate Christmas lights and even a brief glimpse of a distant town at night. It really was a wonderful visual feast. Yet, the image that really stuck in my mind was a quick glance at the wing mirror when the car was starting.

Why? Who knows. But, if I had to guess, then I’d say that it was because the composition and colours were the most striking and memorable. Although I saw a lot of other beautiful scenes during the journey, this one was – by far – the most unique. It almost looked like it could be a frame from a film or something like that.

So, if one scene seems more memorable than the others that you’ve seen, then there’s usually a good reason for this. Maybe it’s easier to paint? Maybe it looks more unique? Maybe it allows you to include visual storytelling? Who knows? But, there’s usually a good reason.


Anyway, I hope that this was useful 🙂

Today’s Art (19th October 2015)

As regular readers of this site probably know, I tend to make my daily paintings quite far in advance of when I post them (it’s kind of like a three-month time delay, I guess).

Anyway, today’s painting is a painting of part of Portsdown Hill (in Portsmouth ) that I painted from memory shortly after a car journey during the summer. This painting required slightly more digital editing than I expected though.

If you want to learn how to paint from memory, then this article might come in handy.

In addition to this, I’ll provide both the “work in progress” lineart for the painting and the brief sketch I made as soon as I got home as a blog exclusive.

As usual, all three pictures in this post are released under a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND licence.

"Portsdown Hill On A Summer Day" By C. A. Brown

“Portsdown Hill On A Summer Day” By C. A. Brown

Here’s the “work in progress” lineart:

"Portsdown Hill On A Summer Day (Lineart)" By C. A. Brown

“Portsdown Hill On A Summer Day (Lineart)” By C. A. Brown

And here’s the small sketch that I made about ten to twenty minutes after memorising the scene in question (and, yes, I drew the outline of the car window too):

"Portsdown Hill On A Summer Day (Initial Memory Sketch)" By C. A. Brown

“Portsdown Hill On A Summer Day (Initial Memory Sketch)” By C. A. Brown